By the pricking of my thumbs, someone fuzzy this way comes. Mr. Jackson is excited. The windows of the Swamp Manor are open, there’s a crispness in the air and a faint chill on the breeze. September has crept up on us before I could even watch Jaws. It’s (past) time for the weekly Haul, so let’s see what’s in the stash this week.
A Brand. New. Witchfinder. One of my favorite corners of Mike Mignola’s mythology returns after an extended absence with Witchfinder: City of the Dead #1. I read it the other night and it’s fantastic, it reminds me very much of Arthur Machen’s obsession with modern England being built over the ruins of Roman and Pagan Villages. We also have the final issue of Abe Sapien, a title that along with B.P.R.D., I am months behind on. I’ve never missed an issue since their inceptions, but as you can see from the above photo, I have let them pile up as I’ve been busy.
Next We have James Bond: Eidolon (not pictured) which I tried to skip for budget’s sake, but came back for the next day, It’s a very enjoyable comic. Afterlife with Archie, Francesco Francavilla’s fantastically melancholy horror saga. X-Men 92, which is absolute crap, but features The Flaming Lips in addition to the early 90’s Jim Lee line up of the team, and will be a much appreciated gift, I suspect, for my no good brother. And Silver Surfer 200, which I’m excited for. Lastly, as you can see hiding in the corner under the covetous scrutiny of Mr. Jackson, is Star Trek the Key Collection Vol. 1. This came in the mail at a criminal discount, it is an out of print collection from the defunct Checker publishing company of the 1960’s Gold Key Star Trek comic series.
My good fiend at spacestationwagon.com recommended these comics to me, and they’ve been fantastic so far. I have always been more of a casual fan, and not a fundamentalist Trekkie. The bright colors and cheapness of the original series endear it to me more than anything else, big ideas and the limitless frontiers of space in the 23rd century on a shoe string budget make for damn fine entertainment. Tricky Rick Dixon (of the aforementioned Spacestationwagon) and I have been talking recently about Star Trek Beyond, the most recent movie, which we both saw separately in it’s last week in the theater, and we both loved it. It was panned by Star Trek fans because it is fast paced, entertaining, accessible, and fun. It led to him talking about the Gold key series, and I’m glad I bought it. The Checker edition is the most faithful (and complete) reprinting of the series (as opposed to the more expensive recolored, and shoddy IDW editions, sorry ladies, I’m spoken for) with it’s original colors and every blemish of the original product. They also have as you can see, these incredible eye-popping 60’s Gold Key Photo collage covers. Right off the bat, the uncredited writers of the series and I suspect the artists as well, have clearly never seen the show. Aside from the names and likenesses of Kirk, Spock, McCoy, and barely Uhura, everything is fantastically wrong. All the sets, details, characterization, and voices are off, the Enterprise drags trails of exhaust from it’s engines in the vacuum of space, and best of all, in two thirds of the issues I’ve read so far, hot-blooded and mischievous science-officer Spock is ready for PLANETARY GENOCIDE at the DROP of the HAT.
That said, these stories have been an incredible joy to me all week. It’s the crew of the Enterprise going on adventures, being set upon by huge horrifying monsters, the first issue borrows heavily from The Thing, with crew members transforming into amorphous, tentacled murderous plant monsters. It’s the adventure element of the show on an infinite budget, and it’s some of the most simple, dumb fun I’ve had reading in a long time.
That’s it for this week, folks. I have some grisly work to get back to before I can sit down to enjoy the rest of this reading pile. Until next time boils and ghouls, beware the seller of lightning rods.